Posts Tagged ‘devil

23
Feb
19

Luciferina (2018): Mercy for The Devil

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a Primal Root review

Is there any more tired trope in horror cinema than an exorcism?  Man, they’re a dime a dozen. You get a young girl (typically) put a demon in her, let science fail, hire a priest, he spouts some nonsense from the old testament, people die, someone sacrifices themselves, evil is either vanquished or at least there’s a stale mate. Like Beauty and the Beast, it’s a tired tale as old as time and, ever since it has risen to considerable heights with classic horror offerings like William Freidkin’s sublime 1973 touchstone, The Exorcist, William Peter Blatty’s truly exceptional and highly underrated The Exorcist III and then it kind of spirals into the abyss of B-Movie cheese or pop culture relics, not that I don’t love them, but rarely is the story ever given an update or does it conjure up anything truly shocking or surprising. When I hear there’s an exorcism in a film, I know I’m going to be in for shaky bed, ass spewage, cheese a minute city.

That’s why I was so damn pleased when I finally say my ass down and gave the 2018 Argentinian horror offering entitled Luciferina a shot.  When I first popped the blu-ray into my player I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect from Gonzalo Calzada’s latest offering.  I can tell you, I was not anticipating this startling original take on the stalest genre of horror since The Walking Dead drove the last nail into the zombie genre. But, I digress…

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Luciferina tells the tale of young, virginal Natalia (Sofia del Tuffo) who resides in a convenient and is on her way to becoming a nun when the tragic death of her Mother brings her home to be with her bed ridden, comatose Father and recovering drug addicted sister. Once she arrives, it becomes clear that things are not at all right there. Well, will all the blood drenched pieced of art featuring both phallic and yonic imagery which she created in her final moments. Bizarrely, their ill father who can’t get out of bed, no communicate, is kept all the way up on the third floor of their immense home along with all these disturbing pieces of art,  where his deceased wife’s blood and internal goopage was utilized by her own insane hands to create these masterpieces of the macabre. Not only that, but the dozen or so pieces are set up TO FACE THE POOR BASTARD…and there are two incredibly bright lights pointed at their poor Dad’s face both night and day which I cannot for the life of me understand how that’s supposed to help him with his illness, but I’m not Argentinian doctor, so…I mean, whatever you think is best doc.

Natalia’s sister, Angela (Malena Sanchez) believes a curse has been visited upon the family for both her and her sister having left and has arranged for the two of them, along with Angela’s rag-tag Scooby-Doo inspired team of misfits, including her ultra violent and uber rapey poster child the Argentina Proud Boys movement, Mauro (Francisco Donovan) to take a journey deep into the jungle to take part in a spiritual rite performed by a Peruvian Chaman (Tomas Lipan). This rite involves knocking back entheogenic brew of Ayahuasca. From what I understand, ingesting this concoction typically doesn’t lead to the ripping of one’s friends into multiple meaty chunks and leaving said chunks strewn about an ancient temple, but, some folks have far nastier demons buried within than others… Natalie decides to go along on the trip (hehehe) and take part in the ritual which will bring everyone face to face with the secrets of their past, their darkest memories and  lead to an unexpected, unplanned, and deeply affecting final rite that I can only describe as a sexorcism.

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Luciferina is an incredible slow burn of a horror film that does a commendable job of eschewing expectation based on the horror audiences common knowledge of such proceedings and keeping the true nature of Natalie a under wrap and still in question by film’s end.  Why is Natlie drawn to her mother’s blood soaked murder portraits of male and female genitalia? Why does she repeatedly have visions of those around her bathed in light? Why does she keep having dreams and visions of an abandoned abbey in the jungle and a mysterious old woman within? And why is this chaste, virtuous , nun in training beginning to feel sexual attraction and lustful urges towards those around her? The movie makes clear throughout how Natalie views sex as something dirty and obscene. Take for, for example, an early scene once Natalie comes home and takes a shower. She closes her eyes and begins to stroke her breasts and touch herself between her legs as the steam rises, but as soon as she opens her eyes, she sees several larch cockroaches by her feet in the bottom of the tub. It’s a grotesque and startling moment, but one that perfectly illustrates Natalie’s point of view, which becomes all the more relevant by film’s end.

I understand the issues many folks have with Luciferina. That the further we get into the story and the more things attempt to make sense, the less that they do. And by the final act,  the fine crafted suspense and feeling of deep, unsettling dread eventually give way to exceptional bloody practical effects and one of finest sex scenes I’ve seen in any film, horror or otherwise, what feels like eons. Natalie, who is portrayed pitch perfectly by del Tuffo, spends the first two thirds of Luciferina building her into a fragile protagonist, but by the film’s end, she becomes just as believable as confident, strong, uncompromising heroine. And, to be honest, the finale sexorcism scene is brilliant, equal parts arousing and disturbing and trail blazingly unique. It comes across as absolutely relevant and a full 180 degree turn from what exorcist films have presented to us in the past, as a woman embraces her own sexuality and empowering herself to destroy and vanquish a demon.

Can I get an amen?

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Luciferina possess a dark, alluring beauty all it’s own , one I am not accustom to in modern horror genre. With it’s wholly original combining of sex, the cycle of existence, angels, demons, is fascinating and disturbing and the film carves open it’s own bloody, beautiful path. From what I gather, Lucifernia has a truly progressive and positive message regarding sexuality female sexuality, which in itself is a blessed breath of fresh air in a genre that so often boasts a near medieval conservative view of female sexual relations (I’m looking at you, Jason Voorhees).   In Lucifernia, sex can be used for great good or absolute evil, it can either possess or exorcise. Sex is not inherently shameful, dirty or sinful, it all depends on the purpose of which you wield it. That mercy, not punishment, can perhaps be the answer. Now, how many religious horror films can you recall with the brass balls to convey this specific message?

Luciferina is by no means a masterpiece of the genre, but it is a one of a kind take on a thread bare genre, one that is captivating and alive with a creative energy rarely experienced by horror audiences these days. Exceedingly original, both disturbing in it’s imagery and astoundingly gorgeous in it’s cinematography, and manages to avoid making what could have EASILY been a cheap, exploitation “Fucked by The Devil flick” (not that there’s anything wrong with those.) and instead deliveries what I would say is among the most empowering and positive female driven horror films I’ve ever seen.

I give Luciferina FOUR out of FIVE Dumpster Nuggets.

Stay Trashy!

-Root

 

 

 

 

28
Dec
18

Mandy (2018)Crazy Evil and The Depths of an Exquisite Hell

 

MANDY

a Primal Root written review

“I’m your God now.” – Red Miller, Mandy

The stars so rarely align to deliver a piece of art so pure in form and so glorious in it’s delivery as filmmaker Panos Cosmatos’ Mandy. Now, the setup is nothing new. Two souls love one another, find comfort in one another’s presence and deep bond beyond story book love evolves between them, a deep er connection more profound, peaceful and meaningful that most are lucky to find in a lifetime. That love is torn asunder and one of the two must seek revenge in order to find any kind of peace ever again. It’s a nightmare scenario, and one all of us can identify with in one way or another. To imagine the person we love and hold closest being taken away, never to be returned…in our heart of hearts, we would all want bloody revenge on those responsible.

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What sets Mandy far apart and leagues ahead of it’s unifying trope is the means by which our tale is told. It has taken elements as familiar and comfortable to us horror fans as well worn pair of loafers and injects those elements with energy, a clean new take, unfettered originality creating a new kind of monster that lumbering, brutal, and ready to fuck your brain hole.

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Mandy takes place in the great Pacific Northwest’s Shadow Mountain in 1983.  Red Miller (Nicolas Cage) is a mild mannered, bearded, beefy, lumber jack who works in the mountains by night and comes home to his uniquely beautiful artist girlfriend, Mandy Bloom (Andrea Riseborough). The two share a log cabin together and live a peaceful existence outside of society where they keep to themselves. That is until a fucking piece of shit christian cult drives through town, and their greasy, psychedelic, long haired, immensely insecure and bullying leader, Jeremiah Sand (Linus Roache) gets single passing glance at Mandy and decides he MUST HAVE HER. But, in order to do so, Jeremiah and his cult decide they need some help from some horrifying motorcycle riding, spike faced creatures from beyond the edge of Hell to help pull of their seduction/abduction plans.

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That night, as Mandy and Red sit in front of their television watching the trash cinema epic, 1982’s Nightbeast, and chowing down on what looks like steak and taters to me, the cult organizes their Hell creatures and set their horrible plan into action just as Red and Mandy hit the sack. In a nightmarish, dreadful sequence shot with blue strobe lights, these biker Cenobite monstrosities subdue our two protagonists, tie Red up with barbed wire in the backyard and take Mandy to meet Jeremiah who force feeds her some form of hallucinogenic and attempts to seduce in a prolonged trip of scene set in bright, neon red and purples. Of course, Mandy refuses and laughs hysterically at their weak, piece of shit leader as he shows off his nekkid body after his pathetic “join our lame-ass-cult sales pitch, and it is decided that she must meet a truly heinous and cruel death for her disrespect. The excruciatingly painful murder is committed in front of Red, who must witness the love of his life’s death in all it’s agonizing brutality.  We are shown this moment of savagery reflected in the eyes of Red, who is bound and helpless to save her.

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Once the deed is done, the cult packs it up and heads off into the rising sun, leaving Red for dead, still tied up in barbed wire and suffering from a brutal stab wound. Of course, Red manages to get free of the barb wire, has a final, soul crushing moment with his love’s remains, and decides over chugs of vodka and screams of abject horror, agony and rage, that this cult’s time is up and he is bringing them Hell they’ve never even imagined.  What follows is a film that straddles a place between the mystic and the psychotic and it a goddamn wonder to behold. You feel Red’s rage as he sifts through what’s left of a life that he and Mandy built together, a love so pure and care free, it breaks your heart, and to see that light they had together so fucking senselessly snubbed out because of the whims of a fucking ego maniacal fuck face, you, as an audience, just wish you could help him get that revenge he so desperately seeks.

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After gaining advice and weapons from some old friends, his crossbow “The Reaper,” and crafts a badass battle axe, Red sets out on his odyssey alone, to settle the score with the men, women and monsters who tore his life apart. Once by one, Red visits these murderers and viciously attacks and delivers his vengeance. Obviously, Red had some previous training in survivalism, but there is a learning curve for Red, which is pretty refreshing for this kind of film. Red gets his ass kicked a couple times and even finds himself captured, but he tends to get better as he goes along. Especially once he snorts some coke and does some tainted acid in the mobile home of the monstrous creatures we learn go by he name,”Black Skulls,” which turns the world into a new kind of technicolor nightmare. A neon blood bath we will spend the rest of the film in.

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A horror film where The Devil is the good guy, the far right Christian cultists are the fucking hive if perverse villainy and Nicolas Cage, who gives a career best performance as a mild mannered guy who has it all taken away battling the forces of evil among Shadow Mountain? Gang, that’s nothing not to love about this poetic acid head, black hearted, beautiful bitch a fucking masterpiece. This is Trash Cinema at it must unrefined and reaching it’s greatest heights. I know a lot has been said about Nic Cage’s performance in Mandy, how it’s just another “freak out” performance from this most beleaguered of Hollywood actors. To me, this is one of the most naturalistic and honest performances of the man’s entire career. When Red is chugging vodka in his tighty whities in the bathroom while screaming in absolute rage and grief, you cannot tell me this is not exactly how your would react and feel if you just witnessed the love of your life burned alive right in front of you. To have held the ashes of that one person that meant everything to you in your hands, who died only because she refused to give in to a madman.  Gang, this is a performance that deserves all the recognition in the world. Also, that Cheddar Goblin commercial is a thing of Trashy beauty, too. 😉

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Mandy is a powerhouse of a film and my pick for 2018’s Golden Nugget Award, for Best Trash Cinema Film of the Year.

Five Dumpster Nuggets out of Five.

Stay Trashy!

-Root

25
Dec
18

Bootsie Kidd: Trashmas Devil Girl 2018 (NSFW)

Trashmas Devil Girl Bootsie Kidd is here to fill your Trashmas with pain and pleasure!

Merry Trashmas, Gang! It’s you pal, The Primal Root, bringing you your ferocious, sultry, blood thirsty Trashmas Devil Girl 2018, Bootsie Kidd! A devious, diabolical, and divine package of voluptuous sensuality, Bootsie Kidd is bring the legend of Krampus to vicious, yuletide life! Fest your eyes and have yourselves a very merry Trashmas, Gang!

Stay Trashy, -Root

Photography by Kayla King of Rewski Photography

 

31
Oct
18

(NSFW) Setsuka: Devil Girl of Halloween

TRASHY HALLOWEEN, MY FILTH RIDDLED COLLECTIVE BRETHREN! We have quite the treat for you this Halloween in Trash Cinema Collective Land, straight from the bloody, boiling, gapping mouth of Hell we bring you are sultry, sexy, satanic Devil Girl for Halloween 2018, SETSUKA! Before you feast your eyes on a truly gruesome and gorgeous spread of epic proportions, let’s take a moment to get to know our ferocious Halloween Devil Girl. 

The Primal Root: Setsuka, holy smokes, your photo spread is truly stunning! Might I just say, you look fantastic in red. Where did this gory and utterly gorgeous concept come from?
Setsuka: Thank you! The concept for this shoot came from a melding of ideas between my wonderful photographer and I. I absolutely love the look of blood and we had both been wanting to do a Baphomet themed shoot for a while. I’ve always been into darker things and I feel like this shoot really captured my alter ego.
TPR: How was it modeling in a spread where you became progressively bloodier? 
Setsuka: It was quite a unique experience! This was my first photo shoot using blood so I had no idea what I was getting into. However, it turned out to be more fun than I ever could have imagined. Every part of my body was sticking to another part of me.
TPR: Have you been a part of creating macabre, dark spreads similar to this before? 
Setsuka: I have not. All of my experiences in the past have been full of light and more glamour focused.
TPR: Can you speak a little about the blood and rope aspects of the photo shoot and how different the post images are, compared to on set? 
Setsuka: During the shoot  I wasn’t quite sure how the images would come out but Kayla’s confidence really encouraged me and made me more confident. When I saw the images I was blown away. I couldn’t believe it was me and the spread surpassed any expectations I originally had.
TPR: Do you have any favorite bloody, gnarly horror movies you like to break out and watch around Halloween time? What kind of flicks really creep you out? 
Setsuka: My favorite bloody movie would be Hostel. Specifically speaking, the blood bath scene. I am very into the Anne Rice films, Interview with a vampire is my favorite and I thoroughly enjoy movies about serial killers. I love documentaries that get into the minds of people who would be considered monsters by society.
TPR: Any advice for any future Devil Girls out there? 
Setsuka: Follow your creepy little heart and don’t let anyone tell you that your ideas are too much.
TPR: What song would you like The Trash Cinema Collective to listen to while checking out your incredible Devil Girl set?
Setsuka: Devil’s Game by Truth 🖤
Phtography by Kayla King of Rewski Photography

31
Oct
17

(NSFW) Bootsie Kidd: Halloween Devil Girl 2017

Hello Gang, and HAPPY HALLOWEEN! Better known around this neck of the woods as TRASHYWEEN! A day in which we celebrate all manner of devious, lustful and mischievous activities! And it just so happens, our Halloween Devil Girl of the month, is keeping that spirit very much alive, not only today, but year round in honor and in league with all of us grotesque, gnarly, perverse Trash Cinema Collective members. And I ought to know, because this Hellishly sexy, demonically gorgeous and sinfully sensuous Hell spawn is, in fact, The Queen of The Trash Cinema Collective, the muse of The Primal Root, the lovely, talented, badass Ms. Bootsie Kidd! Now, before you go popping your popcorn lusting over her mouth watering treats she’s so graciously put together for you, ladies and gents, let us take a moment to get to know our Halloween Devil Girl of the Month 2017, Bootsie Kidd, just a bit more intimately

 

Root: Oh, Ms. Bootsie Kidd! Happy Trashyween to you! I am absolutely enamored with your devious, playfully sinful Trashyween Devil Girl spread I’ve got to say, you strike a very lovely figure in bright red. Now is this an homage to anything specific? Because this incredibly sexy visage you’ve brought to life looks strikingly familiar…

Bootsie: Why thank you, Primal Root! You’re quite the handsome devil, yourself… But now that you mention it, yes! This character is drawn from none other than the new & improved Trash Cinema Collective Devil Girl emblem!! I’m so incredibly proud to flesh out the artwork of Crimson S. Ramsey (Tallahassee local legend, creative genius, and supreme goddess) who also created the artwork for Trash Cinema’s HQ Cap City Video Lounge’s emblem; that big, hulking, beefcake of a gorilla climbing Florida’s Capital with yours truly!

Root: Also, holy smokes, where is our Devil Girl hanging out, checking out ‘Nude for Satan’ and getting her racy ideas from? It certainly looks like a lively and colorful locale…

Bootsie: Better believe it, buster! The location is Cap City Video Lounge, cult movie rental store and independent theatre!! With CCVL coming up on its one year anniversary as the only video rental store anywhere near Florida’s capital, we thought we’d spice it up with a hot-as-hell tribute with its very own Devil Girl in the flesh!

Root: What prompted you to bring The Trash Cinema Collective Devil Girl to such lovingly rendered, vivid life for us this Trashyween? What is the story behind the spread?

Bootsie: I have a love for and connection with The Trash Cinema Collective that goes beyond the usual. Trash has always been a love of mine, but ever since my first Trash Cinema Night at Bird’s Aphrodisiac Oyster Shack (every first Saturday of the month!) in November 2011, I’ve been a part of this family, and, given its full-throttle evolution in 2017, this felt like the perfect moment to bring her to life to spread the good gospel of Trash Cinema to Tally and far beyond! We bring life, color, imagination, blood, breasts, and beasts to a world that, frankly, is in obvious desperate need of it!

Root: As I am SURE you are more than well aware, TODAY is Trashyween! What are some of your absolute favorite Halloween movies that you just cannot not watch as you carve jack-o-lanterns and roll around in pagan orgies before a wild, autumn blaze on a cold Autumn’s eve?

Bootsie: Oh, honey! Well, frankly, Cap City Video Lounge is showing some of my absolute favorites tonight; WNUF Special (trust me, this thing is a deliciously bizarre, utterly unique tribute to 80s cable T.V.), Halloween, Halloween III, and Trick R Treat (for the best werewolf scene of. all. time.) Other than those bad boys, Exorcist III is my all-time favorite horror, Prince of Darkness is my favorite John Carpenter, Ernest
Scared Stupid is my favorite horror comedy, and Near Dark is my favorite country-fried vampiric cinema which I’m going to have to INSIST you do a Devil Guy spread of Severen as soon as is inhumanly possibly, Mr. Root!

By the way, all of these can be rented via Cap City Video Lounge. Jus sayin.

Root: Now, a question about the red skin color, is that makeup or was that lovely shade added later in post? Like I said earlier, it looks amazing on you.

Bootsie: Let me tell you something, mister. My makeup is to die for thanks only to the endless talents of Kayla King of Rewski Photography. That woman worked her voodoo and made magic happen with this utterly spectacular color and composition you see before you, and she does the same with every project she takes on. On top of that, I had the time of my life!! Kayla was patient, easy to work with, enthusiastic, kind, helpful, creative, wildly experienced, and a professional to the core bent on making the shoot everything I wanted it to be. You want a photo shoot done better than you could’ve imagined it? You want Rewski Photography, baby.

Root: Any big plans for your Trashyween evening tonight, Bootsie? What’s happening down in the bowels of Hell?

Bootsie: Darlin’, there’s only one place in the world I’d want to be for Halloween tomorrow night; behind the bar at Cap City Video Lounge in all my Devil Girl glory!!! We’re showing some of the best horror has to offer with the WNUF Halloween Special, Halloween, Halloween III, and Trick R Treat! On top of that, IT’S BYOB, BABY!!! Only $5 at the door, special Halloween drinks brewed and candied popcorn crafted by yours truly will be available! Whether you wanna cut a rug, talk cinema, or chill and get chilled with a killer movie in our Phantomas theatre or to rent and take home while you greet trick-or-treaters, Cap City Video Lounge is perfect for getting you into the Halloween spirit!

Root: Any words of wisdom for our Trash Cinema Collective Members out there and any possible upcoming, possible Devil Girls?

Bootsie: Honey, do it! Whatever creative flair you want to bring to the table, we would love to have you! You control it all, and we’ll be there to help in any way we can to make it one of the best creative experiences of your life! All genders welcome!! (must be 18 years or older)

Root: What song would you like your admirers to listen to while feasting their eyes on your tasty treat of a Devil Girl spread?

Bootsie: I would say either Man or Astro-Man’s ‘Defcon 5’, Queens of the Stone Age ‘The Way You Used To Do’, AC/DC’s ‘If You Want Blood’, Puscifer’s ‘Rev 22:20’, and Jace Evertt’s ‘Do Bad Thing’s With You’. What can I say, I’m a Devil Girl who likes the spice of variety!

Photography by Rewski Photography

https://rewskiphotography.smugmug.com/

 

30
Oct
16

(NSFW) Exotic Zombie: Halloween Devil Girl 2016

Gang, as I am sure you’re well aware, the glorious dark, yearly celebratory evening of Halloween is upon us. Tomorrow night we release or inhibitions, unleash the monsters within and present to the world our other side. The strange, bizarre and often macabre side that society at large so often frowns upon. The Night of Halloween represents to so many of us a form of freedom and pleasure unrivaled by any other holiday. An evening of indulgence. And this filthy beast can imagine no more fitting expression of the excitement, the beauty or the creepy wonder of our favorite holiday here at The Trash Cinema Collective than with an astounding new spread from our gorgeous Devil Girl, Exotic Zombie as The Mistress of the Dark, herself, Elvira! This Halloween Devil Girl spread is all treat and not trick as Exotic Zombie gives us one very dark, sensual and ridiculously fun spread!  Let’s get SPOOPY, Gang! 

The Primal Root: Exotic Zombie, you have gone and beyond this year! First, your spot on Frankenhooker spread for Valentine’s Day and now, as our 2016 Halloween Devil Girl, you’ve given us a seductive, sensual, spoopy Elvira spread sure to get our Trash Cinema Collective Member’s popcorn poppin’! You’re one hard working Devil Girl, EZ. 😀

TPR: What drew you to the character of Elvira: Mistress of the Dark for this shoot?

Exotic Zombie: Halloween! It’s my favorite time of year! The misty foggy mornings, the evenings cool enough for horror flicks and fire gatherings, and most of all the welcoming mood of all things spooky and weird, like myself… Who better to portray than the Maiden of Macabre, Elvira! When I found my outfit at The Other Side Vintage, tried it on, and got a crazy reaction from friends on Facebook, I discovered what it’s like to have big… hair. Who doesn’t love that kind of attention!?


TPR: Where did you shoot this spread? The sets are creepy as Hell!
EZ: I became reacquainted with the owner of the local haunted house during an interview, I took a tour at their new location and I was inspired by several creepy nooks and webbed corners. Terror of Tallahassee has been around for 18 years and it was such an honor to use the facility that has become such a yearly local tradition!

TPR: Any fun or interesting stories you can share with us about your spooktacular Devil Girl spread?
EZ: As a photographer, I very rarely end up on the other side of the camera. I always start out nervous. Elvira has such an eclectic and bubbly personality, it was really easy to get into character and feel comfortable. It was even easier getting out of clothes!!! Warehouses typically don’t have air conditioning and things tend to get hot and steamy when there’s a 5 man crew, 2 cameras being passed around, and several lights heating up the room!
For a sexy spooky shoot like this, my biggest advice would be to avoid fog machines in small and non ventilated areas… and keep the nipple jewelry simple when wearing metal webs on your breasts!


TPR: So, with Halloween approaching, what horror movies or creepy shows do you plan on watching on that most filthiest of days? Also, what sugary treats will you be munching on as you let the horrific cinema wash over you?
EZ: I try to squeeze in as much horror as possible every day of the year! My must sees for the month of October consists of: Hocus Pocus, 28 Days and Weeks Later, Thirteen Ghosts, Young Frankenstein, and Trick R Treat is a new additions! The perfect treat for this ghoul during the best time of year would have to be pumpkin seeds, baked fresh from a new monsterpiece carving!

TPR: What are you dressing up as for Trashyween this year? Any mischief planned for the big night?

 
EZ: My closet is FILLED with monsters! If I could dress up every day of the month, I may not even be able to exhibit them all. I have had several requests to appear as Elvira at parties and even a wedding! I am honored to portray such a classic icon for all things dark and spooky!

TPR: If you could pick one song to be the soundtrack for your Devil Girl spread, what would it be?

I wanted to pick something less traditional or stereotypical this Halloween. Nightcall is the perfect selection for conjuring the darkness from within.

TPR: Okay, one last question, is it cool if I call you “Mistress of the Dark” in person?


Any day of the year! 😉

I would like to give credit to all of those who were involved with this amazingly spooktacular set! This wouldn’t be so epic without you all!

Model and MUAH: yours truly!
Editing: Rewski Photography
Photographer(s): Kevin Cole aka the Primal Root, Qas Jordan aka Bootsie Kidd, and Wade Bishop of Wade Bishop Photography!
Location: Terror of Tallahassee
Special thanks to my husband Jeremy King for great behind the scenes, Rich Robards for additional shots and setup, and Joe Fisher for the props, Sarah Lamb for the spider bra, and The OTHER SIDE Vintage for providing the costume as well!

Please visit my website at https://rewskiphotography.smugmug.com/ to purchase your favorite Devil Girl prints!!!! Don’t forget to check out these links too:

https://rewskiphotography.smugmug.com/Devil-Girl-Spreads-NSFW/
https://www.facebook.com/Rewski.Photography/
https://www.facebook.com/wadebishopphotography/
https://www.facebook.com/Terroroftallahassee/
https://www.facebook.com/theothersidevintage/

Without any further a due, we invite you feast your eyes on the most bewitching of Halloween Devil Girls spreads and the gorgeous Exotic Zombie takes you into her dark lair fro a Halloween thrill like you’ve never known. Oh, and Gang, Happy Halloween!

Stay Spoopy!

-Root

10
Feb
16

Phantom of the Paradise (1974): Salutations from the Other Side

phantom-of-the-paradise

a Primal Root written review

I’ve long held that the golden age of American horror cinema stretched from the late 1960’s to the end of the 1970’s. It was an age when turmoil, violence and change was in the air. Filmmakers of the day were shaken and inspired by the horrifying, nightmarish world around them, internalized this terror and in the end brought it out of the darkness as some of the most devastatingly influential horror films the world will ever witness.  There is one other genre that happened to thrive in the 1970’s, one I know far less about, and that is the Rock Opera.

Flicks like Tommy, Jesus Christ Superstar, Grease, The Wiz not to mention, The Rocky Horror Picture Show would either garner rave reviews and great success or go on to become beloved cult films the world over. However, some fell by the wayside and are just now starting the reemerge and find recognition as beautiful cinematic oddities they are. And there is none I am more proud to see finally garnering the praise it has long deserved, Brian de Palma’s 1974 film, Phantom of the Paradise.

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Phantom of the Paradise blends the horror trappings of The Phantom of the Opera and Faust together and give it a glam rock makeover serving as a dark comic satire of the entertainment industry. Phantom tells the tale of Winslow Leech (William Finley in an awesome performance) a young and naive composer looking to make it big with his life long work, a cantata based on the legend of Faust. No sooner does the the owner of Death Records, an utterly charming, smooth talking, calm, collected and utterly malevolent man who has sold his soul to The Devil and goes by the name of Swan (Paul Williams) hear Winslow’s music does he find a way to steal it, exploit it and turn it into pop music garbage to open his long delayed rock palace, The Paradise, with. Swan frames Winslow and has him sent to jail where he is volunteered for an experiment which requires him to have all his teeth removed and replaced with new metallic chompers.  It isn’t long before Winslow hears his own composition on the radio, recreated as a turd of a pop song, and flees from prison. In a psychotic rage Winslow breaks into Death Records, ends up getting disfigured in a vinyl record press, vanishes into the night and is presumed dead…But soon after his disappearance a masked phantom begins stalking the darks hallways and backstage at The Paradise, determined to rain murderous vengeance upon all of those who have hurt and betrayed him.

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Along the way, The Phantom ends up becoming infatuated and falling in love with a young, inexperienced but quite talented singer named Phoenix (Jessica Harper), the only person The Phantom permits to sing his work. Anyone else who tries, he promises, will be killed. Of course, Swan makes the decision to have The Phantom’s music performed by what he considers to be the future of music, a glam rock monster who goes by the name of Beef (Gerrit Graham, who is funny as shit in the role). Despite mid shower plunger to the gob warning from The Phantom, Beef is convinced to perform as scheduled…

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Phantom of the Paradise functions as great piece of anti-establishment satire against the soulless corporatization of art and artists alike. Not only this, but Phantom is also a full on musical, complete with song and dance routines, with every song written and composed by Paul Williams. These elements together do nothing but accentuate the strangeness of the film, it’s so bizarre, so daring and so breathlessly creative, it leaves the viewer’s mind reeling. All this quirky genre blending and tonal shifts leaves us with an unexpectedly heart wrenching musical tragicomedy. I can think of few other films that achieve this level of absurdity and poignancy.

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Still with me? I know the description above may sound a bit overwhelming, and indeed, there is a whole lot to take in with Phantom of the Paradise. It is sensory overload, but in the best possible way you can imagine. Despite the film’s litany of references to other cinematic greats, (Touch of Evil and Psycho, to mention just the tip of the iceberg) Phantom of the Paradise is among the most singular and unique films ever made. Any attempt at synopsis can only do Phantom so much justice, because the heart of the film lies in the experience of watching it. It is very often compared to The Rocky Horror Picture Show, released a year after Phantom of the Paradise, and if I am being honest, the two couldn’t be more different. I suppose it is more inviting to spend time with a group of people basking in their own carnal desires than with a group of tortured artists who sold their soul for rock and roll. It’s just a damn shame Phantom of the Paradise never quite caught on in the states. Of course, I’ve heard the film is fucking HUGE in Canada. And, in face, the two fellows from Daft Punk, according to Paul Williams, met at a screening of Phantom of the Paradise! But that has nothing to with anything…just a cool bit of trivia.

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However, in a way, I kind of hope it remains a hidden gem that exists just below the radar. This way it will never be over exposed to the point of nausea or run into the ground to the point of tedium. Phantom of the Paradise is much beloved by those drawn to it’s peculiar story, dark, comedic, enchanting characters, beautiful songs and unchained artistry. Phantom is a film every bit as much for the misfits as Rocky Horror, but with a much more tragic and lyrical fantasy narrative. You cannot help but feel pity and sympathy for Winslow and righteous indignation once he is transformed from sweet Winslow to the pained and murderous Phantom and finds his revenge. One cannot find something darkly funny about Swans form of easy going, suave, laid back evil as he knowingly manipulates those around him to his bidding, feel sadness as Phoenix is corrupted by fame and absolute astonishment at the the radical comedic performance of Gerrit Graham as Beef.

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Phantom of the Paradise is a marvel of a film. Brian de Palma, Paul Williams and company have crafted something so different, so daring that mainstream audiences had no idea what to make of it. A film so beautiful, poetic, energetic and well played is obviously becoming relic. A thing of the not too distant past, when artistry, creativity and taking chances we heralded above ticket sales and domestic box office grosses. I suppose it’s no big surprise at this point for me to reveal Phantom of the Paradise would rank as one of my top 5 favorite movies of all time. It’s a story of love, passion, betrayal, revenge and possibly redemption set to some of the grooviest goddamn songs to ever be featured in a motion picture. A story of how monsters are created and the good guys and bad guys we all have the potential to be. For those who have never seen it, I recommend highly recommend checking it out, but keep in mind it is not everyone’s cup of glitter. For those of us who adore the film, it;s always worth heading over the The Paradise from time to time and witnessing one of the funniest, most lyrical, most enjoyable tragic love stories ever told.

I’m awarding Phantom of the Paradise 5 out of 5 Dumpster Nuggets.

Stay Trashy, Gang!

-Root




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